12 Nov A Trader’s Journal
Keeping a trading journal can prove to be an effective tool as your experience with trading increases. A trading journal is an excellent point of reference and will serve as a companion through many, many trades.
Type of Journal
This type of journal should be something small enough that you can carry it around for easy reference. Fortunately, small paper journals are popular again. There are a variety of options at your local Barnes & Noble for easy notation and transportation.
There are a variety of apps (both desktop and mobile) that offer journal-type features. Day One is a mobile/desktop application for Apple products. It is made to work much like a diary with many great functions. This is a nice option because the information is stored in the cloud and can be accessed from many different devices.
Evernote is another nice option that can be used on your desktop and/or mobile device. With many free features this could be an excellent method of tracking your trades.
My favorite product currently available in the market is LiveScribe. This product combines the ability to annotate in a notebook and storing all notes digitally. The Bluetooth enabled pen stores and syncs your letters while also offering voice recording. The pen is fully rechargeable and offers tremendous value.
What to Write
Nothing, and I do emphasize nothing, should distract you from executing your trading strategy. Do whatever it takes to stay intimately focused on your rules/parameters when trading. When your strategy is at rest, consider the following opportunities to record these points:
– Trade Entry Point
– Trade Exit Point
– Win/Loss (with values)
– Reason for entering
– Reason for exiting
– Your feelings while entering, waiting, and exiting the trade.
As you keep track of these points you will learn more about your trading style and your strategy. The journal should be less concerned with trade tracking and more focused on yourself as a trader. Over time you will begin to notice patterns, habits and tendencies that may only be helpful to you.